The weekend gone by was not a long weekend but felt like it. I can’t even remember what we did on Friday night. It proves my theory that the more you do on the weekend, the more it stretches on. In contrast to the notion that sitting on the couch all weekend will make it seem longer.
Anyway, on Saturday, V had this deep burning desire to go to this Watch Exhibition at the Convention and Exhibition Centre. Basically, the HKCEC hosts these huge trade fairs with various themes and though the target is generally serious buyers, there are retail bargains to be had too.
Now, I’m a bit anti-watches. I even went a huge length of time without a wristwatch. Sure, I had my mobile to tell the time but it makes a difference not to be able to keep track of the ticking minutes with just the flick of a wrist. It’s quite liberating, all you punctualanals out there! Anyway, I don’t have a good track record with holding on to wristwatches (ie- I lose them on a regular basis) so I’ve stopped buying them. Instead, I’m using one of V’s 3 watches, which mysteriously I’ve managed to hang onto for over two years (fingers crossed!).
And I don’t see any reason to have a clock in every room. One small clock somewhere should do fine, I think. However, V has been going on about getting a “cool clock” for some time so I decided to go along with it.
Unfortunately, when we got to the registration desk we were informed that we couldn’t go in because we weren’t in the trade. The next day was open to retail buyers. Fair enough, but V’s not used to not getting it right so he kept whining on for some time.
A strange thing happened while we were getting into the queue. This white guy, going the wrong way, brushed past us and said loudly: “Too many Indians fuck the place up.” What was strange about this was:
a) This kind of virulent racism is more the exception than the norm these days so it was surprising
b) I wasn’t so much outraged but amused that these relics of a time past still walk the earth. Don’t they realize they’re soon going to be swallowed up by Indian and Chinese people? Or is that what’s making them so angsty?
I didn’t feel motivated to do anything except stare at him like one might gawk at a particularly ugly breed of dinosaur. Though, of course, had I had opportunity to pass him again, I might have given in to the impulse to make some kind of rude counter-comment. But fate deemed that I do the mature thing which is roll my eyes and move on.
Clearly, I wasn’t as unaffected by the whole incident as I’d like to believe because I’m still thinking about it three days later. But the quality of my disquiet is different. And I think it has something to do with the confidence that Indians (or at least the rising middle class of Indians) has gained over the past five years or so. We’re as good as or better than anyone else and we don’t need to go out of our way to prove it.
* * *
The clock idea shelved, we walked down to Wan Chai in search of a chandelier. The current one in our living room is the one thing we both want to change in the new house. However, the perfect lighting centerpiece seems to elude us.
V then insisted on eating this flat rice noodle thing in a roadside shop, thwarting my plans for a big fry-up lunch at Flying Pan. After this, we walked down to Wan Chai market in quest of sporting attire for moi.
The tragedy of my life is that I no longer fit into any of my old shorts. And my old tracks are now more suitable for sleeping in. V, who is always dismissive about my “need” to buy clothes, realized that a shortless wife could prove to be very inconvenient when one has signed up for a golf lesson. Not that I went for the lesson pantless (in the US, and not UK, sense) just that I spent 40 minutes beforehand wailing “I have nothing to wear!”
The lesson, which happened two weeks ago, was disastrous, in case you’re wondering. I decided I wanted to learn because two years ago I had done pretty well at a trial class (ie- I had managed to hit the ball after two tries). Unfortunately, this seems to have been a one-off wonder because at the lesson I was terrible and V was great, which always annoys me. Now, I have decided we are going to go swimming, which is one thing I’m better than him at.
Anyway, the weekend gone by was one of those rare events when V actually facilitated a shopping spree. Maybe because, in this case, I too didn’t want to want to spend much money. My theory is that since one is bound to look sweaty and unattractive when exercising, there’s no point in investing in nice clothes. It irritates me no end that sneakers and gym clothes cost so much in sports shops.
I found some cheapie tracks and one pair of shorts and then we broke for lunch at a curry place. This is one of those curiosities where a Chinese person runs a curry house. So the dishes are all Indian but the cook is Chinese. The food reminded me of dhaba food. The mutton curry was a bit thin but yummy anyway and scored points for being proper mutton (ie- goat). The chapatis were the kind an Indian mother-in-law would approve of.
V was inspired to buy mutton from the market himself and cook us a biryani. This proved to be the most awesome biryani I have had in a while… or maybe ever. I find myself repeating that Sound of Music song in my head (“must have done something good”) a lot these days.
* * *
That evening, we went for a swim in our building pool, which we discovered the week before. It’s so so peaceful and awesome even if we are the most out of shape people in the pool. And also the most splashy. Did I mention I’m a better swimmer than V?
Then out for an enormous dinner at Ruby Tuesday with friends S&S. My thirst for getting drunk had been reawakened after a night on the town with a girl friend from a time past who visited HK recently. I realized I could count the number of times I’d had that kind of night out in HK on my right hand. Even though HK makes that sort of drinking very easy. Or maybe because of it. But also because of the people. Sure, V and I got tired of Friday night drinks at some point but also, we kind of lost touch with the people we used to do it with. I love S&S but they’re not the type to go crazy.
However, V picked this night to let his hair down. That is, he decided not to eat dinner and only drink long island ice teas. I’ve seen what these do to V and it’s not pretty. And it wasn’t. I felt bad for shouting at him for being an idiot later, but I guess it’s fine to be an ass when everyone else is but not if everyone is sipping one cocktail and being la di da.
* * *
To my chagrin, V woke up without a glimmer of a hangover. And made me an awesome breakfast to cure my impending one (“something good” playing in my head again). Then down for a swim again… not sure how much actual exercise we get in the pool but it’s better than nothing.
In the afternoon, we went for Star Trek at an Imax theatre. Watching this film on Imax is a good choice. I spent the aftermath of the film really confused about which character I liked best (this is always an important choice for me) and kept vacillating between Kirk no Spock no Sulu no Chekov no… ok shut it! And before the film started I managed to buy two pairs of shorts and a skirt in the mall downstairs.
Crowned the weekend off with a massage at this tiny place V discovered. Unfortunately for me this was one of the worst massages of my life. The ladies who run the place are very sweet but the woman who massaged me had fingers like knives. Never again!
And that, dear very-bored-person-who-read this, was why I woke up very surprised on Monday that it was all over.